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Study: How Many Americans Are Smoking Pot? The Number Is Nuts.

By  Pardes Seleh

A recent Gallup poll found that one in eight adults in the United States said they smoke marijuana.

The survey, summarized by Gallup’s Justin McCarthy, found that 13% of adults in the U.S. report currently using marijuana, compared with 7% reported in 2013. 43% of adults in the U.S. reported having tried the substance, compared with 44% reported last year, 38% reported in 2013, and 4% in 1969.

These results coincide with the growth in the number of states where recreational marijuana usage is legal.

McCarthy suggests the states’ “willingness to legalize marijuana could be a reason for the uptick in the percentage of Americans who say they smoke marijuana, regardless of whether it is legal in their particular state.”

People who live in states in the West are more likely to smoke recreational marijuana than those in other parts of the country, even if it is not legal in their particular state. Recreational marijuana is legal in states like Colorado, Oregon, Alaska and Washington; while medicinal marijuana is legal in states like Hawaii, Arizona, Nevada and California.

Gallup also concluded age and religiosity are key factors that play into the likelihood of smoking marijuana. Almost one in five adults under age 30 reported currently using it. The total amount of adults over age 30 using marijuana was approximately half that amount. Just 2% of people who attend church weekly said they use marijuana, compared with 14% of people who rarely or never attend religious services.

Income and education levels do not seem to impact an American’s likelihood of trying marijuana; however, low-income Americans are more likely to report currently using it.

The overall conclusion of the Gallup poll, McCarthy writes, is that recreational and medicinal marijuana usage and experimentation has increased and will predictably increase within the next few years as states continue to legalize it.

Survey info: A random sample of 1,023 adults living across all 50 U.S. states and aged 18 and older were interviewed over the phone between July 13-17, 2016.

Follow Pardes Seleh on Twitter.

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